Monday, November 27, 2017

Kitesurfing Tasmania 2017 - trip summary

This is summary of our late spring kitesurfing trip to Tasmania.

The wind forecasts shifted a lot during the preceding week.  Initially Marrawah looked good but closer to the date a large high pressure system in the Tasman resulted in a northerly air stream along the East coast so we booked a large house in Stanley to sleep eight.

Day 1. Friday 24 Nov

Flying over the Tamar, looking back to Port Sorrell in the distance where we kitesurfed last year.

On arrival, we found the Kia Carnival seat configuration did not fit us and our gear well, so we were lucky to swap it for a Hyundai iMax.

There was no wind so we drove to Coles Bay and hired a double kayak and a SUP and paddled across Honeymoon.[link]

We checked out the Friendly Beaches on our way back to Swansea - looks promising for kitesurfing!

We had a great house in Swansea that slept all eight of us and had plenty of room and good views across to the Hazards.

Kiters & boards - Taz, Mike, James, Anthony, Peter, Dan, Stu S, Stu W.

Lots of kangaroos and wallabies close to roads

Day 2. Sat 25 Nov.

Session 425 [link] - First kitesurfing on our 2017 Tassie trip cured my cabin fever - a nice downwinder from Peggs Beach to Stanley East Inlet

Session 426 [link] - East Inlet speed runs

Day 3. Sun 26 Nov.   

Session 427 [link] - Douglas River surf then a downwinder to Bicheno.

Five had another session at the wonderful Friendly Beaches, while three or us returned to Bicheno to order pizzas.

Day 4. Mon 27 Nov

There were some storms about in the morning

We scored some nice pancakes and jam at Kates Berry Farm near Swansea.

We drove to Coles Bay then walked to the Wineglass Bay lookout in Freycinet National Park, some continued to the beach and back.  Its a very popular walk for tourists.

Wineglass Bay
Then it was a quick dash to the airport with a 5 minute lunch stop on the way.  A final bag pack and we were on our way home.

Wilsons Prom and Shallow Inlet look great from the plane on the way home, its good to have a window seat.


Sunday, November 26, 2017

Kitesurfing Douglas River and downwinder to Bicheno

Session 427.  Tasmania kitesurfing trip Day 3.

Some wind on the East coast! We headed up to Bicheno and stopped for a look at the Blowhole.  We were lucky to see some whales were breaching far out to sea.  There wasn't much wind about so we continued up the coast as far as Sneaker Bay where there was a good beach.

Kitesurfing Douglas River

Bicheno Blowhole

The crew at Bicheno Blowhole

Bicheno Blowhole
Lunch in Bicheno

Sneakers Bay

Sneakers Bay

Sneakers Bay

We returned to Douglas River which looked like the best spot.  The beach has amazing white sand and the wind was over 10 knots.  Mike and I drove back to Bicheno to leave a car there then returned to Douglas River.  I took out my Flite 14.5 and had plenty of power to get out through the surf.

There were some good waves and the deep water was dark blue.  A couple of kites were down in the surf, it seemed that nobody was ready for the downwinder.  I sensed the wind was dropping so I headed off, glancing back nobody followed.

There was a rocky section of coast were swimming in would not be fun so I stayed out of the waves and concentrated on keeping a good line towards Diamond Island. It was a relief to make it the beach then the sand isthmus that connects the island to Tasmania, but the wind dropped out there.

I landed the kite and looked at the endpoint about 600m along the beach, still no signs of the others.  The wind picked up so I relaunched my kite and continued to the end of the tour.  There were some bigger waves closing out and not enough wind for more kitesurfing so I landed, very happy to complete the downwinder.

I packed up my kite and returned to the beach for a look - kites were coming in the far distance!  They all made it to the island beach (just).  I walked over to say hello and then back to the car.

This downwinder was one of the highlights of the trip for me.

On the downwinder

Diamond Island

Here come the others

South to Bicheno